How to Date a Nurse Who Works the Night Shift

Written by
Jenna Elizabeth
August 17, 2022

You have finally met the apple of your eye, the light of your life, the cream of the crop, everything your little heart desired. That is to say, you’re pretty sure you found a good one, but there is only one problem: They’re a night shift nurse (cue dramatic sound effect). But does dating a nurse who works the night shift really lead to a doomsday ending? Of course not! In fact, we are confident that dating a night shift nurse can actually turn out to be one of the kindest and most compassionate relationships out there. That’s because, despite having busy full-time nursing schedules, which may include working the night shift, nurses are caring, affectionate, and good at managing their time. 

So how about it? Are you feeling all googly-eyed for a nighttime nurse? Or, perhaps you are the nighttime nurse and want a few strategies to keep the flame burning bright with your current partner. Either way, we have some great ideas for dating a nighttime nurse or maintaining a relationship while working as one. 

Prioritize Face-to-Face Interaction

Spending quality time as a couple is essential for any relationship. That’s because couples who engage in the most quality time tend to be happier and stay together longer. It makes sense then that prioritizing face-to-face interaction when dating a nighttime nurse is critical to building a successful relationship. But with a night nurse often working odd hours and long shifts, how exactly is a couple supposed to create space for quality time? 

First thing’s first: Don’t expect your darling night nurse to return home from a shift and be up for a chat. That is to say, it’s important to respect your nighttime nurse’s boundaries when it comes to their “winding down” and sleep time. After all, getting enough rejuvenating sleep as a nurse is vital for nurses wanting to maintain a high level of cognitive functioning at work. To put it bluntly, let your Nightingale nurse sleep. Then, plan ahead and start carving out quality time to chat with your nurse sweetheart when they wake up from their slumber. You can take it one step further and earn bonus points by sneaking in some acts of service, such as washing dishes or tidying up around the house while your partner sleeps. By the time your sleeping nurse beauty wakes up, they will feel grateful for the thoughtful chores you completed as well as rested and ready to connect! 

Leave a Romantic Note & Send Silly Texts

In-person connection is obviously ideal when it comes to building a strong romantic partnership. However, sometimes the nature of night nursing can affect how much face-to-face interaction you and your partner will have together. With that said, leaving a romantic note here and there and taking advantage of virtual mediums can come in handy when a couple can’t spend as much time together as they would like. So while nothing replaces in-the-flesh interaction, a thoughtful note left pegged to the refrigerator, or sending some silly (but sweet) texts to your loved one, will let them know you are thinking about them. Keep in mind that a night nurse may not be able to respond right away, especially if they are an ER nurse; they will, however,  appreciate the sweet gesture. 

Schedule in Self-Care 

Night nurses work a schedule contrary to societal constructs; as a result, working the night shift can sometimes be lonely. Similarly, dating a night nurse can also feel lonely. That’s why it’s a good idea to schedule self-care activities to help both partners feel mentally and physically nourished. Self-care activities can include anything from a yoga class to getting a fresh haircut to meeting up with friends. And while it’s also nice to participate in self-care activities together, having your own list of self-care acts outside of the relationship can help keep loneliness at bay. That said, both a night nurse and their romantic partner should make sure they pencil in a few self-soothing and restorative self-care activities a week. 

Plan a Trip or a Stay-Cation

couple at the beach

Dating a night nurse can mean that vacations have become few and far between. Due to long hours, and sometimes sleepless nights, a night nurse needs to be able to bounce back, which means following a strict sleep schedule when off duty. On the flip side, some night nurses, particularly PRN nurses, can sometimes “stack shifts” and end up with four or more consecutive days off. This time off can allow for planning a weekend getaway or planning a few outdoor activities like hiking or taking a camping trip nearby. However a night nurse and their main squeeze choose to “get away,” simply escaping as a couple is a great way to keep the flame in a relationship burning bright. 

You Call It Madness, But I Call It Love ~ Nat King Cole

Some may call you crazy for falling head over heels for a night nurse, but then again, the heart wants what it wants. And, in all fairness, we think nurses have some of the biggest hearts out there. With that said, we believe if you have your heart set on a nighttime nurse, put in the effort and make it work because when night falls, love will light the way. 

Are you dating a night nurse? What are your tips to keep the love alive? Share your secrets below!

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Jenna Elizabeth
Blog published on:
August 17, 2022

Meet Jenna, a contributing copywriter at Nursa who writes about healthcare news and updates, empathy and compassion for nurses, how to show staff appreciation and increase retention, and guides that help nurses navigate career pathways.

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